Gault @ 50


The Schubert Center for Child Studies is thrilled to announce that we are joining with the National Juvenile Defender Center for Gault at 50, a year of action in support of juveniles’ right to counsel as we approach the 50th anniversary of In re Gault. Gault is the 1967 landmark Supreme Court case that ensured the right to a defense lawyer for children. 

Unfortunately, nearly 50 years later, many children lack access to qualified defense counsel.  Too many states allow children accused of delinquency offenses to be processed in an assembly-line form of justice, accepting waivers of counsel and pleas with little regard for potential lifetime consequences of justice court involvement.  Few children receive access to a qualified juvenile defense attorney who can effectively navigate the juvenile justice system. Furthermore, despite the rehabilitative mission of the juvenile justice system, many U.S. juvenile courts do not employ developmentally informed best practices to ensure the best outcomes for youth and the public. Appropriately trained, funded, and supported juvenile defense counsel would help to realize the constitutional legal protection envisioned in Gault.

The NJDC released a report “Defend Children: A Blueprint for Effective Juvenile Defender Services.” The report can be accessed here. NPR covered the release and the full NPR story can be viewed here.

Gault at 50 Statement of Principles


We encourage our community to join us in signing on to Gault at 50’s Statement of Principles and to join us as we promote monthly themes to spread awareness about the importance of meaningful access to qualified counsel.



August 2016 School-to-Prison Pipeline, Know Your Rights
September 2016 National Hispanic Heritage Month
October 2016 Youth Justice Awareness Month
November 2016 “Giving Thanks” Native American Heritage Month, Homeless Youth Month, Rights of the Child Convention
December 2016 World Human Rights Day, Family Engagement
January 2017 National Mentoring Month/ Attorney Mentors, Human Trafficking
February 2017 Black History Month
March 2017 Women’s History/Girl’s Issues, Youth Art Month, National Reading Awareness Month
April 2017 Arab American Month, Child Abuse Prevention Month, National Volunteer Month, Earth Day
May 2017 Mental Health Awareness Month, Asian Pacific Islander Month